There are so many layers to the macadamia story. From cooking, health and wellbeing to people, gift ideas and macadamia country, there’s a lot to discover about this extraordinary Australian nut. Spend a little time exploring our latest stories. You’ll be amazed at what you find!

Home » Stories » Macadamia makers » A macadamia moment with Ben Milbourne

A macadamia moment with Ben Milbourne

You are most likely to recognise the face of Ben Milbourne from when he first hit our TV screens back in 2012 in the hugely successful cooking show MasterChef. A proud Tasmanian, Ben has once again become a regular on Australian TV with the launch of a new season of his acclaimed food tourism show, Left Off the Map. 

We take a macadamia moment with Ben Milbourne from his kitchen in Tasmania.

What’s your favourite place to eat anywhere in the world?

Right now it’s a place in Hobart (Tasmania) called Sunny – that’s the restaurant I go to most. I also love the restaurant in Hobart where I’m Culinary Curator, called Peacock and Jones. I love eating the food we have on the menu there. Third behind that would be at my kitchen table at home with my kids. I love to cook them the food I grew up with, like spaghetti and meatballs, tacos, stir fries and pasta. When I’m working in the restaurant my wife will sometimes bring the kids in before our service starts, and they get to sit up at the bar and sample what’s on the menu that night. They score the food out of 10 – they’re my toughest critics!

A macadamia moment with Ben Milbourne

What ingredients have you really been enjoying lately?

I absolutely love the stone fruit season, especially cherries, white peaches and nectarines. It only runs for around eight weeks of the year but I make the most of that time. I’ve been eating about three white peaches a day. I love to finely grate macadamias over them – it almost melts as it hits the peach. It’s kind of like a sweet parmesan, and it’s surprising how much you can grate from one nut.

Why do you love macadamia nuts?

They are just so incredibly versatile. Macadamias work equally well in sweet and savoury dishes. They can be used raw for a delicate flavour and a soft crunch or roasted to achieve a more intense noisette flavour with a cleaner break. They coat your mouth differently depending on whether they’re raw or roasted.

What’s one ingredient you can’t live without?

Citrus and vinegars – in other words, the acid in a dish. Acid is overlooked as a seasoning because most people don’t think of it like that. But if you’re going to add the amount of oil that I add to a dish, you need something to balance it and that’s where acid comes in. It ensures you don’t feel like you’re eating overly rich food. 

What’s your favourite movie or TV show?

My favourite TV show is The Good Place, and I love Marvel movies. 

If you were an ice cream, what flavour would you be?

I’d be a lemon sorbet. I like eating refreshing foods. When I travelled through Portugal, Spain and Mexico filming Andy & Ben Eat the World (a show Ben made with best mate and 2012 MasterChef winner Andy Allen) we ate a lot and I hated getting to the end of a day feeling uncomfortably full. That’s where I learned about adding lemon or lime wedges to a meal. I could eat so much more because I didn’t feel completely stuffed!

To learn more about Left Off the Map head here and to watch recent episodes visit 10 Play

All images courtesy of Ben Milbourne and Cultivate Productions

Related Stories

Meet some macadamia farmers – and their dogs! All along Australia’s east coast, from the mid north coast of New South Wales up to Mackay and Rockhampton in… Read More
Magdalena Roze enjoying macadamia nuts in Australia A macadamia moment with Magdalena Roze A television presenter, meteorologist, journalist, food writer and cook book author, Magdalena Roze is passionate about wholefoods and cooking. She… Read More
Macadamia taste maker Josh Waters from Stone & Wood Josh Waters can talk about beer all day long. Previously a chef for 20 years, flavour has always been important… Read More
Macadamia change maker Marc Harrison Macadamia change maker Marc Harrison Marc Harrison is a problem solver, a wood whisperer who turns macadamia shell and timber into desirable, beautiful objects. His… Read More

Get monthly emails about all things macadamias. Yum!

Just pop your details

down here

Contact us

Sorry for interrupting, this website uses cookies to improve your user experience. Continuing to use our site means we’ll assume you’re ok with this.